India vs South Africa | Predicted XI for 5th ODI in Port Elizabeth

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India vs South Africa | Predicted XI for 5th ODI in Port Elizabeth

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SportsCafe Desk


On the slow conditions at St.George's Park, India will try to create history by winning their first-ever series in SA while the hosts will try to do well to stay alive in the series. While the conditions are expected to favour the Indian bowlers, the spectators may not see an avalanche of runs.

Shikhar Dhawan : The Gabbar is back and how! After a forgettable first Test in Cape Town, he was kept out of the playing XI for the remaining Test series, but Dhawan answered the critics in his own inimitable style. He has already scored 271 runs at an average of 90.33 in four matches and can give the African bowlers a run for their money once again. 

Rohit Sharma : While Virat Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan have been enjoying a purple patch in South Africa, Rohit Sharma – the other member of India’s new batting triumvirate - has managed a top score of 20 in the ODI series and been dismissed by Kagiso Rabada six times from eight innings in this tour so far. While a contribution from one of India's serial run-accumulator is due, Kohli will just want that to come to the fore sooner than later.

Virat Kohli : To say, Kohli is in the form of his life is just an understatement and much to the dismay of the South Africans, he was among the run-scorers in all four matches of the series. Given India’s fragile middle-order and Rohit’s terrible run of form, Kohli knows that the team need him each and every time he steps his foot onto the field and his runs are as important as ever.

Ajinkya Rahane : After a 79-run innings in the first match of the series, Rahane has been a spectacular failure and will not have much chance to prove his credentials if he fails to make that count today. Especially because Shreyas Iyer is licking his lips to take over the No.4 mantle, it is for Rahane’s to swim or sink from now on. 

Shreyas Iyer : In Johannesburg, India were stuck by Kedar Jadhav's absence, which left the team with exactly five bowling options. While undoubtedly, Iyer is a way better batsman than Jadhav, he was reportedly seen bowling leg-spinners in the nets and also deserves more than one chance in the Playing XI.

MS Dhoni (wk) : MS Dhoni needs just 46 more runs to become the 12th player to reach 10,000 runs in ODIs and will be the fourth from India to reach the landmark after Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid. Apparently, Dhoni would have been unaware of this stats, but with the growing question of his dwindling batsmanship, it will provide a chance for him to roll back the clock to produce another one for the ages. Remember Cuttack 2017?

Hardik Pandya : The blue-eyed boy is now in the danger of losing his spot in the Playing XI, not because he lacks quality, rather because of his reckless shots and lack of efforts to improve his bowling. While Kohli has been a strong advocate of work ethic and commitment over talent, Pandya should take a lesson from Sarfraz Khan saga and be a consistent cricketer. He is too "famous" a player to serve the drinks.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar :Bhuvneshwar Kumar has become the vital cog in the Indian team and there would be no question of his spot in the XI. When he doesn’t perform with the ball, he makes sure that he does well with the bat lower down the order to lead the team to a good score. While he hasn’t been in his lethal best in the ongoing ODI series with the ball, in the last match at Newlands, his 67-run unbeaten partnership with Kohli helped India go past the 300-run mark.

Kuldeep Yadav : The wrist-spinner, alongside his partner Yuzvendra Chahal, has spun a web around the South African batting line-up and is the main force in India’s dominant run in the series. When the conditions were against him, he still didn’t lose the grip over his bowling in the fourth ODI and picked up two important wickets for the team.

Yuzvendra Chahal : A forgettable ODI for the Haryana leggie after a long time. After a catch off his bowling was dropped by Shreyas Iyer in deep mid-wicket, he bowled David Miller on a no-ball, and rest is history. The African batsmen took him to cleaners for their first victory on the tour, but the leggie will look up to the first three matches’ performance so as to redeem himself.

Jasprit Bumrah : Bumrah has been outclassed by the spinners in the series, but should be credited for the way he managed to build pressure on the openers - especially Hashim Amla. His yorker has always been an asset for the team and he also hopes to bring that to fore today.

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